To Our Future Surrogate,
Growing up in Atlanta, I had a wonderful childhood. My parents got divorced when I was 8 years old and I was raised by a single, hard-working mom. She taught kindergarten to provide for my sister and me. My dad was very involved as well and even now, we talk every single morning. Despite being a broken family, our parents made sure we had everything we needed. Still today, my mom, my sister and I are all very close and best friends. I love spending time cooking new recipes, reading suspense novels, and regrettably watching shows on Bravo. Family is very important to me — we still have the same traditions and it makes me smile thinking of how I will pass these traditions to my own children.
After leaving Atlanta, I went to college and graduated from the University of Georgia. After college, I started nursing school at Vanderbilt University in Nashville, TN. I wanted to help people – children specifically. I went on to graduate as a Pediatric Nurse Practitioner. As fate would have it, my college boyfriend, Tom, graduated and moved to Nashville as well.
Tom grew up in Nashville his whole life. He lived most of his life going to school and then going straight to the ball fields. He played 3rd base and to this day I still love watching him throw a baseball with my twin nephews. Tom graduated from Auburn and started a career in Nashville. He works hard and I am so very proud of him. He spends his free time on the golf course and cheering on the Tennessee Titans.
Family is everything to us. Early in our marriage, my sister in law got pregnant with our first niece. We couldn’t wait to help with her. We babysat, popped over to their house as often as we could, and have watched her grow into the most amazing 14 year old. We went on to have 4 nieces and 2 nephews. We were always the “fun Aunt and Uncle.” We loved how they would race through the house to greet us when we visited. It was truly our joy to be with them and witness them take first words and first steps.
After a few years, it was finally our turn. We were going to start our own family. We were so excited. After years practicing as Aunt and Uncle, we were so ready. As weeks turned into months and months turned into years, we became discouraged, sad, and defeated. We finally decided to turn to modern medicine to help. Over the course of 5 long, excruciating years, we did everything possible. I underwent multiple IUIs, 5 IVF transfers, 1 endometriosis surgery, thousands of shots, and countless tears. I desperately wanted to have a baby and was determined to do whatever it took. Everyone around us wanted to help in some way but no one could understand the deep pain we felt with each loss. We flew to Colorado to see if they could help us. The doctors gave us one final “Hail Mary” IVF transfer. When it failed, I crumbled. After grieving for weeks, our doctor told us that surrogacy was our only option.
Surrogacy is hands down the most amazing gift I have ever been given and is the closest to understanding how amazing God’s love is on earth. A friend from childhood, Sue, called me out of the blue and wanted to be our gestational carrier. She felt called to help us and had always considered surrogacy. After having a child of her own, she knew her body would agree. The next 12 months were amazing, hard, and beautiful all in one. Sue gave us our beautiful daughter Louise and we can never truly express how grateful we are for her gift.
We are hopeful to complete our family through surrogacy once more. We hope to have open communication, share feelings and milestones, and attend appointments together. Because we have done this before, we are very excited about the possibility and prepared for what the journey entails. Throughout my journey to motherhood, I’ve kept this verse close to my heart; “God will either shield you from suffering or give you unfailing strength to bear it.” We are hopeful, grateful, and eager to pass those traditions from our childhood on to another sweet baby.